Re: [PATCH] Version 3 (2.6.23-rc8) Smack: Simplified Mandatory AccessControl Kernel

From: Joshua Brindle
Date: Sun Sep 30 2007 - 13:46:20 EST

Andi Kleen wrote:
- hm, netlabels. Who might be a suitable person to review that code?
Seems that Paul Moore is the man. Maybe he'd be interested in taking a
look over it (please?)

I personally consider these IP options it uses to be pretty useless. Who could ever use that without cryptographic authentication? Clearly when they were designed in the original IP spec long ago the designers didn't understand
network security very well because the whole field was at its infancy. And CIPSO doesn't solve any of these fundamental issues.

It assumes a trusted network which is a very dangerous assumption. I don't think that was in the original patch I looked at, I surely would have objected to it.

Perhaps take the network part out? I guess SMACK would be useful
locally even without questionable network support.

CIPSO is supported on SELinux as well. It certainly has uses where IPSec is excessive. One example is someone I talked to recently that basically has a set of blade systems connected with a high speed backplane that looks like a network interface. CIPSO is useful in this case because they can't afford the overhead of IPSec but need to transfer the level of the connection to the other machines. The backplane is a trusted network and that isn't a dangerous assumption in this case.

CIPSO also lets systems like SELinux and SMACK talk to other trusted systems (eg., trusted solaris) in a way they understand. I don't regularly support CIPSO as I believe IPSec labeling is more useful in more situations but that doesn't mean CIPSO is never useful.

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